Jon Batiste has premiered a new single and video, “Freedom.” The soulful, exuberant track finds Batiste showcasing his playful, joyful songwriting style. The video premiered exclusively yesterday on Facebook.
Batiste radiates excitement on the track, and the accompanying video is equally colorful. The singer, songwriter, and bandleader and musical director on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert shows up to the party in a magenta suit (courtesy of Coach), strutting down the streets of New Orleans and basking in the glow of a day party. Kids are playing drums on buckets, while others show off their skills on the jump rope. A group of effortlessly cool women join Batiste to dance along to his infectious track.
“Freedom” is taken from Batiste’s smash-hit LP, WE ARE. The album was released March 19 via Verve Records. “Freedom” follows “CRY” and the album’s debut single “I Need You,” more in line with the electric energy of “I Need You” than the morose, pensive contemplation of “CRY.”
We Are was recorded in New York, Los Angeles, and New Orleans, Batiste’s hometown, and written in approximately a week. It is said to have a combination of influences, including “the consciousness of Marvin Gaye, the grounded optimism of Stevie Wonder, the iconoclasm of Thelonious Monk, and the swagger of Mannie Fresh.”
Speaking of the album, Batiste said: “We Are is a message of love for humanity, of humble reverence for our past, and of a hopeful future, in which we are the ones who can save us. The art reveals its motive to you. You just have to wait for the Spirit to tell you what it wants.”
He added, “I’m publicly known for some things already, but there’s so much more to know about me,” Batiste says. “It’s always been there. Now is the time to show the world my full artistry.”